With the continuing dominance of the OTAs and an ever more competitive online travel market, climbing to a prominent position in the search rankings is more challenging than ever.
It takes an ongoing, committed SEO strategy to secure and maintain a high ranking in the organic listings, but it can be done. And one of the simplest and most effective ways to boost your ranking is with a well written and frequently updated blog.
The Link Between Blogging And Good SEO
When your guests are researching their breaks online, Google’s algorithm serves up what it interprets as the most helpful and relevant pages as answers to their search enquiries. In simple terms, if Google considers your blog a quality source of helpful and relevant information, your hotel’s website will rank more highly in the SERPs. So what goes into a successful blogging strategy? The following tactics will help you get noticed by both the search engines and your guests.
1. Look Beyond Keywords
Some hotel marketers are still working under the misconception that a blog post only has SEO-boosting potential if it is packed with keywords. It’s true that years ago, hitting a high keyword quota was an effective way to grab the attention of Google, even if it meant frustrating, less than helpful content for readers. But times have changed.
Ever since the Panda algorithm rollout of 2011, Google has been penalizing websites with keyword overstuffed content, while rewarding those which offer unique and genuinely useful content with higher rankings.
With this in mind, every post you produce should contain something informative, interesting and if you can; original. By tackling your posts with this approach, you’ll automatically gain authority in the eyes of Google, as well as demonstrating to your audience that you genuinely care about their needs.
2. Create Evergreen Content
As the name suggests, evergreen content refers to posts with longer term value, which can be reused to boost traffic throughout the year. As always, the content that works best will be tailored to your particular audience, whether it’s a guide to budget child-friendly attractions in your city for families or a set of themed blogs on working on the road for corporate guests. Start with your guests’ needs, wants and questions and work from there.
These posts may need to be subtly tweaked and fine tuned now and again to ensure they remain relevant, but the great thing about evergreen content is it generally low maintenance.
3. Don’t Forget Links
To make life easier for your readers, and to give your SEO efforts a massive helping hand, don’t forget to include internal links within your blog posts to other pages on your hotel’s website. For example, if you’ve written a post about a specific local attraction, link to your website page which includes general information about all the things to see and do in your city. If you’ve written a feature drawing attention to a new promotion, include a link to your specials page along with a compelling call to action.
Does your hotel maintain a regular blog? Have you noticed the correlation between blogging and higher search rankings? Let us know in the comments below!